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We explain to all donor families that there’s no timetable for grief, and no magical date when we will feel better. There will always be times when the pain of loss catches us off guard. Although we cannot return to life as we once knew it, we can learn to build our life around a “new normal” that includes memories of our loved one, but not all the pain. If you find that the pain never entirely goes away, we want to assure you that this is normal. It’s ok. No matter what other relatives and friends may say about “time healing all,” your experience is yours alone.
We support donor families by staying in touch with you by phone, e-mail and mail. If you’re the next-of-kin, you will receive a phone call shortly after the donation to let you know the outcome. During this difficult time in your life, we refer you to other agencies, and we suggest support resources when needed. Some of those resources come in the form of materials we mail to you. Our program continues for two years. At that time, you should notify us if you wish to continue receiving communications from us.
Yes, our department invites you to attend special events, such as TRIO of Manhattan’s annual “Remember and Rejoice Ceremony” at St. Patrick’s Cathedral in April, which is open to everyone.
TRIO of Long Island honors donors each year with a Rededication Ceremony of the Rose Garden in Eisenhower Park on Long Island. LiveOnNY's Family Recognition Program and Luncheon in October is by invitation only, usually for the families of the most recent donors, as well as selected transplant recipients.
In those cases when a donor family and recipients wish to communicate with each other, Donor Family Services and the relevant transplant centers facilitate this. More specifically, we act as a third party intermediary should you or the recipient(s) of your loved one wish to reach out to each other in some way.
You should know that we encourage recipients, through their transplant centers, to contact donor families (even though they do so anonymously) to say thank you. In the course of an ongoing correspondence, there may be some identifying information exchanged and even a request for a meeting.
At all times, the confidentiality of both the donor family member and recipient is strictly maintained by LiveOnNY and the transplant center. Only you or the recipient may decide when— or if — you wish to reveal identifying information to each other.